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Georgia 4-H youth participate in the State Land Judging Competition at the C.W. Stripling Irrigation Research Park in Camila, Georgia. CAES News
4-H Land Judging
More than 25 Georgia 4-H youth participated in the 2021 State Land Judging contest at the University of Georgia’s C.M. Stripling Irrigation Research Park in Camila, Georgia. Four counties from across the state brought teams to compete.
Late summer is the right time to prepare soil for September to October plantings of cool-season crops such as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, collards, kale, Swiss chard and Brussels sprouts. CAES News
Winter Garden Prep
The end of summer into early fall tends to be the hottest time of the year in the state of Georgia. Many of us are about tired of laboring in our summer gardens, and the heat, humidity, and disease and insect pressure have certainly taken their toll on our summer crops. However, for those of us who still have the gardening itch, the last weeks of summer are the ideal time to prepare your garden for winter vegetables.
College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences researchers tested biodegradable pots made from (left to right) wood pulp fiber, cow manure and coconut coir. CAES News
Sustainable Gardening
Professional and home gardeners alike can grow landscapes sustainably with the help of biodegradable plant containers, but gardeners may wonder whether these containers decompose quickly enough to avoid hindering plant growth.
Soil sample bags await processing at the University of Georgia Soil Testing Laboratory in Athens, Ga. CAES News
Last Minute Gifts
The gift of knowledge is one that any farmer or gardener can truly appreciate. Research is continually finding new and better ways to deal with the challenges farmers and gardeners face and University of Georgia Cooperative Extension publications document those recommendations.
When it comes to insect pest problems in a vegetable garden, leaf-footed bugs are among the most difficult to control. The immature stage of the bug is bright orange. This adult leaf-footed bug sits atop a tomato that has cracked, likely from too much moisture. CAES News
Gardening Tips
Bob Westerfield has grown a vegetable garden at home for the past 30 years, and every workday he helps Georgians do the same. As the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension consumer horticulturist, Westerfield grows vegetables to document successes, watch for problems to learn how to solve them, and share this knowledge through classes and UGA publications.
Controlling the erosion of your soil can improve your vegetable garden and protect the soil. Soil erosion is related to multiple factors, including the type of soil and how much cover is holding the soil. CAES News
Soil Erosion
The key to successfully growing delicious vegetables is maintaining high-quality soil. We sometimes neglect to protect our soil, then rainfall comes and erosion carries our crops away. Erosion control is something that must be considered in gardens because it can protect the precious soils.
UGA CAES soil scientist Matt Levi devotes much of his time to improving Georgia's soil inventory by studying the soil profiles on farms across the state. CAES News
Matt Levi
University of Georgia soil scientist Matthew Levi is using technologies like digital soil mapping, spatial modeling and remote sensing to help his research colleagues and Georgia farmers improve their production practices.
Wood ash leftover from roaring fires added to a garden plot also adds calcium and magnesium to the soil, similar to applying lime. UGA Cooperative Extension experts say, like lime, wood ash will increase the pH level in your soil, so add it in moderation. CAES News
Wood Ash
Many Georgia families enjoy building roaring fires in their fireplaces or wood-burning stoves during the winter. Whether as a source of heat or for enjoyment, when the flames die down, a pile of wood ash remains. University of Georgia Cooperative Extension consumer vegetable specialist Bob Westerfield says that wood ash can be added to garden soil in moderation.
Unlike bagged manure, "free" manure from your local farm may come with weed seeds and pesticide residue. Check the source of your manure before bringing home extras. CAES News
Soil Mixes
Soil tests, provided by University of Georgia Cooperative Extension, give gardeners the recipes for successful gardens. Soil amendments, like river sand, mushroom compost, horse manure, coffee grounds, chicken litter and wood ash, can give the soil a much-needed nutrient boost.